CenturyLink Goes Hollywood With Paul Giamatti

Hollywood’s glitz and glamour may be a far cry from middle America, but it doesn’t have to be -- especially in these days of always on, ever-presented connectivity.

A new campaign from CenturyLink gives rise to the idea that everyone can be a Hollywood insider, even to the point of critiquing acclaimed actor Paul Giamatti (Sideways, American Splendor) on his sales pitch. 

“We enable entertainment, and in doing so, we make Hollywood Insiders,” Spencer Lange, CenturyLink’s director of marcom strategy for consumer products, tells Marketing Daily. “Everyone has moved into the expert areas with access to all that content.”

The campaign puts an average family on par with the same knowledge and expertise as Hollywood actor Giamatti. One spot begins with Giamatti directly addressing the camera touting the features of CenturyLink’s “Prism” product. As he gets into the details, it’s revealed that Giamatti is actually addressing a family in their dining room, who then critiques his “performance” using references to obscure foreign and independent films. As the family’s conversation continues, Giamatti opts to grab some food off the table and leave them to their discussion. Other spots include Giamatti playing a “Yes, and…” improv game while the family watches television and the family criticizing Giamatti’s natty appearance by saying “hair and makeup went a little too far.”



The campaign continues — Giamatti-less — in digital executions, where the family acts out Hollywood-esque scenarios like “How to Humblebrag,” “How to Name Drop,” and “How to Avoid Studio Notes.”

“The idea of having a super-savvy family is an idea that can play for a while,” David Register, executive creative director at Arnold Worldwide, the agency behind the campaign, tells Marketing Daily. “There is definitely a meta element to these ideas. This is how people talk in the blog world.”

Using the Oscar telecast was a natural platform to launch a campaign putting forth the notion that average people could become Hollywood insiders. That idea was amplified when Oscars host Chris Rock name-dropped Giamatti in his opening monologue. 

“We had a nice smile when Chris Rock declared Giamatti his ‘favorite actor in the world,’” Lange says. “It was good for us to be running our spots 15-minutes later.”

Next story loading loading..